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Old 3rd June 2024, 05:24 PM   #1
Ed
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Default Renaissance Dagger

I bought this some time ago from the same gent that provided the Erbach Sword.

It is 16.5" o/a with an 11.25" blade.

The grip is wire wrapped with a twisted pair alternating with two parallel wire strands. Rather attractive but original? Who knows.

I had thought that the blade was a piece from a rapier repurposed but I doubt that now for the following reasons...

-The inscription is near the point, rather further than what one would expect to see on a rapier. Then again, I suppose that the inscription could have been added any time.

-there is a tiny ricasso and the hilt end of the blade does not end abruptly. Again, if the maker took care with a fragment from a broken sword this could be accomplished but ... dunno.

Overall it does not give the impression of being slapped together.

Finally ... the inscription ... I read
IOANNES MAG????
It is repeated on both sides. There are no other marks that I can see. Does this inscription ring a bell?

Thoughts?
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Old 3rd June 2024, 08:26 PM   #2
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Based on the photos, the grip wire is a replacement. On original swords, the wire is a lot finer. This wire is too thick in my opinion. The markings in the fuller are fine, fairly typical of a mid 17th to early 18th Century smallsword or rapier. Unfortunately the names of notable smiths were often copied with additional markings that were often misspelled so it could be for one of the famous Johannes or, it might not be.

Looking at the photos, I believe that this was a rapier or smallsword blade that has been cutdown then assembled into a dagger. My instinct says more recently (by a couple 100 years) than from when the blade was first forged.

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Old 3rd June 2024, 08:31 PM   #3
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Why cut down?
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Old 3rd June 2024, 08:51 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed View Post
Why cut down?
I can only operate on the photos as shown, but the tip doesn’t look symmetrical in them. Also it looks very thick.

Finally, it looks ‘wrong’ to me, especially with that fuller running all the way up like that. This is exactly the kind of forte I would expect to see on a cup hilted rapier or smallsword of the period I mentioned.
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Old 3rd June 2024, 09:17 PM   #5
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Look at the shoulder where the ricosso is. That is forged. The fuller is filled in.

Does not look like a retrofit.

I thought is was for the longest time.
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Old 3rd June 2024, 10:32 PM   #6
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Quote:
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Look at the shoulder where the ricosso is. That is forged. The fuller is filled in.

Does not look like a retrofit.

I thought is was for the longest time.
I've seen plenty of cuphilt rapiers with fullers that terminate before the ricasso like that. If anything, that photo showing the poor fit between the crossguard, grip and blade shoulder re-inforces my opinion that it's a later composite.

Also look at the tip of the blade, the fuller terminates at a flat section that continues to the point, giving it a screwdriver point. If original you'd expect that to narrow down to a point from the fuller.
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Old 3rd June 2024, 11:52 PM   #7
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What I meant was that it looks like a purpose made blade for a dagger, not something that's reworked. It is loose.
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Old 4th June 2024, 05:50 PM   #8
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To me, it looks like a repurposed, probably broken, rapier blade.
The way the fuller ends in the proximity of the tip and how the tip is formed are quite obvious giveaways.
The ricasso of a rapier blade is long and strong and can be reshaped into a tang easily.
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Old 4th June 2024, 08:37 PM   #9
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Maybe. That was my original thinking. Thank you for your comments.
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